Solomon Islands lost it’s COVID-19 free status

“It pains me to say that we have lost our COVID-19 free status.”

The country has lost its COVID-19 free status, Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare announced.

This is following the first confirmed recorded COVID-19 case, Saturday.

Prime Minister Sogavare officially announced in his special covid-19 national address.

The positive case was a male student who boarded the first repatriation flight from the Philippine, Tuesday.

The test results for other two persons who were in close contact with the positive case came out negative after two tests.

Following a contact tracing made, those came to close contact with the positive case have been immediately isolated, including the frontline staff.

Prime Minister Sogavare says, whilst this development has broke the country’s COVID-19 free status, our preparedness efforts for time like this are now activated.

Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare and Interpreter Stella Damutalau announcing the first COVID-19 case.

“It pains me to say that we have lost our COVID-19 free status. But that does not mean we lost our fight, my government is committed to safeguarding this nation as we now have the capability to do everything here locally.”

Mr Sogavare now declares that all isolation and quarantined facilities are now no go zones.

“The GBR and Chengs Quarantine facilities, as well as the Hospital’s isolation center are no go zones.”

He added, there will be no general lockdown, but only lockdowns in these identified no go zones.

Meanwhile, Secretary to the Prime Minister Dr. Jimmie Rodgers told local media, there’s going to be “Business as usual”.

“It’s going to be business as usual. Normal operations as there will be no general lockdown. All citizens are advised to observe all COVID-19 protocols, not to panic, but to be mindful of how we behave.”

The government is currently having discussions over the remaining repatriation flights and are likely to be delayed.

by Gina Maka’a & Charley Piringi

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